GOP-led House will kick off 2014 like it spent most of 2013
January 2nd, 2014
04:44 PM ET
4 months ago

GOP-led House will kick off 2014 like it spent most of 2013

Washington (CNN) - The GOP-led House of Representatives will kick off 2014 – a midterm election year – addressing an issue it spent much of last year debating: Obamacare.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor announced Thursday the House's first order of business when it returns next week from its extended holiday break would be a vote on legislation to address potential security risks for personal information collected on the Obamacare website, HealthCare.gov.

In a memo to House Republicans, Cantor compared security problems with HealthCare.gov and other state-based online insurance exchanges to the high-profile hacking that Target experienced last month when the retailer admitted millions of shoppers'personal financial information was compromised.

Cantor pointed to a recent report from Experian, a credit rating company, which predicted the health care industry was especially vulnerable to data security breaches in 2014. He also said four House committees held hearings at the end of last year demonstrating that the protections put in place by the Obama administration for HealthCare.gov were not sufficient.

"To date, the Administration has downplayed the risk of a data breach, perhaps in part because their primary goal is signing people up for insurance through the Exchange," Cantor stated in his memo, arguing there is no system in place to notify those who might be affected by a security problems.

Drew Hammill, spokesman for House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, panned Cantor's announcement, saying next week’s vote was another GOP effort to undermine the law and “that effort even extends to scaring their constituents from obtaining health coverage. “

“Six million Americans began enjoying the security of health coverage this week, including 2.1 million Americans who have enrolled in a private health insurance plan through health insurance marketplaces,” Hammill said.

Aaron Albright, spokesman for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which administers the website, told CNN all personal information entered by those who enrolled in health insurance online is protected.

"To date, there have been no successful security attacks on Healthcare.gov and no person or group has maliciously accessed personally identifiable information from the site. Security testing is conducted on an ongoing basis using industry best practices to appropriately safeguard consumers’ personal information," Albright wrote in a statement. Albright also said the site uses sensor and other security tools to prevent any unauthorized access.

House GOP legislation, according to Cantor, will "strengthen security requirements as well as require prompt notification in the event of a breach involving personal information."

Republicans already planned to make the midterm election a referendum on the President's signature health care law, so the vote next week will be the first among a string of Obamacare-related votes that will likely stretch into the fall. House Speaker John Boehner and other top GOP leaders have made it clear continued oversight of the law and attempts to roll it back would remain a top focus in 2014.

Cantor's memo promised more action would be coming.

"These steps will be part of the overall effort to protect the American people from the harmful effects of Obamacare by ultimately repealing and replacing the law with patient focused reforms that expand access, ensure quality care, and help control costs."


Filed under: House • Obamacare • Republicans
soundoff (118 Responses)
  1. Ron L

    Here the WORST thing about this situation. I don't care if the Republicans want to hammer the ACA. I don't care if the Republicans want to worry about make believe threats. What I do care about is the fact they will do little else. THE FIRST thing all of Congress should be addressing is the ending of the unemployment extension. Without that money several thousands of additional Americans will become homeless. And many of the ones that have been actively looking for employment are going to find that DON'T HAVE THE MONEY TO LOOK!!! It is both sickening and pathetic how so many members of Congress don't have a clue how hard it is to find a job, especially if you are over 50 years old and were very successful before the recession. I know I was rejected several times for 18 months before I found a part time job stocking shelves at a big retailer.
    Also, EVERYONE should quit blaming Fox News for what is going on in the Republican Party. The viewers of that station would not change their minds if there was not a FOX news. If the station were to change their position, they would simply lose those viewers. They would not change their mind. We have a group of Americans who absolutely believe that those that are long-term unemployed are either lazy or stupid. They believe gay marriage is a threat to civilization. They believe climate change is a hoax. They believe the government can not do anything correctly. They are incorrect on all accounts but NO ONE will every change their minds. The key is we need to get the more moderate logical Americans to the ballot box so fewer and fewer of the people who think this way are elected. All the rest of this stuff is just noise.

    January 3, 2014 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  2. PaulCat

    You people always talk about what the republicans does not do, but yet, you continue to vote them into office. Why is that?

    January 3, 2014 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  3. Lolo

    I gues Herman Munster Cantor will be throeing his hat in the ring next for President. Where does the GOP find these imbeciles? I hope they keep it up, it is just one more nail in their coffins to close it tight so that they can shut up.

    January 3, 2014 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  4. Rosslaw

    Cantor and his ilk realize that they now have a "base' with no need or desire for republicans to even pretend to accomplish anything of substance. Next on the agenda, branding "loose" women with a big red "A" and burning witches.

    January 3, 2014 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  5. Hector Slagg

    Wow,
    It is truly amazing of how many people post here think the congress should rob the rich and give to the poor. Nice work if you can get it. That was Obama's main theme song the last four years. The way the "Rich" help poor people is build a business and put people to work. God some of you people are stupid. You have elected people that think all you have to do is pass a bill and everything will be great. The majority of jobs created recently are part time because of the "Affordable Health Act". Instead of a 40 hour work week it is now a 29 hour work week. People are losing over 25 percent of their wages. Who does that affect? Who?

    January 3, 2014 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  6. Lolo

    @Smitty please tell me what does running a busines or being in the Military has to do with being president? Yeah Bush went but he did not serve on the front lines thanks to daddy. Yes Romney is rich and that is about all thanks to daddy, because underneath he is just as dumb as Sarah Palin.You GOP/TP people are really out of your minds to even come up with the stuff you say. Truly insane.

    January 3, 2014 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  7. foxghostwriter

    Hey, I like Fox News. I watch so that I can see what Jon Stewart will make fun of later that night.

    January 3, 2014 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  8. loyalright

    The House will continue to pass Bills and send to Harry Reid and that is where they will stay like they have for the last three years.

    January 3, 2014 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  9. Larry in Houston

    ""GOP-led House will kick off 2014 like it spent most of 2013"""

    Translation : "we were worthless and getting paid by the taxpayer in 2013" So we will "repeat" the same thing as last yr, in 2014

    January 3, 2014 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  10. cmml

    Shame on the Republicans for trying to fix Obamacare. Let's leave the site open to security risks

    January 3, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  11. Sheila

    @ RON L – - Good luck with that.....You said below :
    ""The key is we need to get the more moderate logical Americans to the ballot box so fewer and fewer of the people who think this way are elected. All the rest of this stuff is just noise""
    __________________________________

    the answer you are looking for is "who" are those ? "who" are the moderate ones ? "who" ??
    Are they going to be 18 – 40 year old voters ? Are they going to be the 45 crowd ? and all the way up to 80 + ??

    November 2014 is going to be a "dandy" – - it's all going to hinge on the ACA, and the Insurance carriers & I can go on & on

    January 3, 2014 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  12. IA

    @ Anonymous....Of course...they are too absorbed in The Bachelor, Bachelorette, Real Housewives of NY...whatever. We're talking about newsstations/news programming. Catch up.

    January 3, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  13. Joe from Arizona

    The Republican House needs not Jesus to get them in line, but Judge Dredd.....anyone wonder what that summary judgement would look like....probably not good

    January 3, 2014 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    IA
    @ Anonymous....Of course...they are too absorbed in The Bachelor, Bachelorette, Real Housewives of NY...whatever. We're talking about newsstations/news programming. Catch up.
    ===============================================

    Aren't you the witty know it all. I can't honestly say what it is you are talking about. I'M telling YOU that over nearly 330 million people don't watch either Fox or CNN or MSNBC. What they do watch is of no consequence to your blather. Those one or two million that do spend useless hours watching Fox (you seriously aren't suggesting FNC gets more viewers than ABC, CBS, or NBC "news channels") simply can't run around news websites insisting Fox represents what the majority of Americans want to hear when in fact the majority of Americans don't watch Fox presumably because they don't agree with what Fox is trying to sell.

    January 3, 2014 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  15. Malory Archer

    cmml

    Shame on the Republicans for trying to fix Obamacare. Let's leave the site open to security risks

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Yeah, except they aren't trying to "fix" anything – they're trying to kill it and offering NOTHING as an alternative.

    January 3, 2014 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  16. will never vote Republician again

    My family is covered under the ACA and we are thrilled! VOTE the do nothing GOP OUT!

    January 3, 2014 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  17. dannyCali

    GOP brain damaged brain dead that's why their keep sing same old song over and over again hahahaha......!! Please bring new idea to fix this country and bring all jobs back to Americans people.

    January 3, 2014 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  18. RAWoD

    Doing nothing. Again. Fire these Bozos - ALL OF THEM.

    January 3, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
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